American Ballet Theater names the first African-American female principal in its history
- Misty Copeland, 32, has now become only the third black principal to be named in the renowned New York-based ballet company’s history.
- Copeland has enjoyed a standing in popular culture rare for ballet dancers, having appeared in commercials and music videos, written books, and established a substantial social media following.
- Image prejudices, stereotypes, and lack of community and early development resources are believed to have contributed to the lack of black principals, the first of whom, Arthur Mitchell, was named in New York City Ballet in 1962.
“I had moments of doubting myself, and wanting to quit, because I didn’t know that there would be a future for an African-American woman to make it to this level. … At the same time, it made me so hungry to push through, to carry the next generation. So it’s not me up here — and I’m constantly saying that — it’s everyone that came before me that got me to this position.”
Read the full story at The New York Times.
(Image Credit: Julieta Cervantes/The New York Times)